Use the dishwasher if you want to save water, U.K. study concludes

We know your type: Your dirty dishes are piling up as you sit immobilized by the question of whether it’s more enviro-friendly to use the dishwasher or wash them by hand. But live in squalor no more — a study by U.K. nonprofit Waterwise found that the average dishwasher uses between 3 and 4.5 gallons of water per load, while hand dishwashing can use over 16 gallons. (Damn, how many dishes are those Brits washing?) Less than 30 percent of households in the U.K. have a dishwasher, a smaller percentage than in many other countries in Europe. If U.K. dishwasher ownership rose to 40 percent, says the study, the country would save up to 20 million gallons of water every day. Waterwise Director Jacob Tompkins sums up: “The study shows that increased dishwasher ownership will have a positive impact on the environment.” And we’re pretty sure that doesn’t only apply to the British.